Enthusiastic crowd greets return of Fort Bragg's July 4th celebrations

Samantha Kummerer Image
Tuesday, July 5, 2022
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From the smiles to the dance moves to the fireworks, the return of Independence Day at Fort Bragg was a success.

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (WTVD) -- Fireworks capped off a jam-packed day of celebration at Fort Bragg on Monday night.

Organizers touted this year's celebration as bigger and better than ever.

Monday's show closed out a seven-hour celebration at Fort Bragg, an event that many cherished as a chance to finally come together.

"It's good to see people out, good to see vendors out, good to see the community come back alive," Tony Baker said.

Thanks to the weather and the COVID-19 pandemic, this was the first full celebration at the Army post in three years.

"I think that's a really exciting opportunity that everyone is back together," said Cassie Bricker, the wife of a military member.

Baker, a veteran, and his wife, Tara, made the trip from Cary to celebrate and remember their military roots.

"After serving in the Army for three decades, I guarantee you there will be at least one or two people that I will run into that I was stationed with way out there," Tony Baker said.

Tara added, "And that's what I mean by family."

Family and freedom were both close to the heart for many on Monday.

"I have a lot of good friends that unfortunately were not able to make it home from deployment or the demons that they brought home with them got them as well, so this is a time for me to celebrate their sacrifices, but it's also a time for us to celebrate this great country that we get to live in on a daily basis," said Col. John Wilcox, Fort Bragg Garrison Commander.

People also used the day to celebrate simple things such as good food, beautiful weather and live music.

"Just being together, you know, getting to see all the families celebrate, and get to see (country music artist) Walker Hayes, get to experience something different," said Kearstie Arledge, the wife of a military member.

Fan favorites included the Golden Knights and a performance by Hayes.

From the smiles to the dance moves, it's safe to say the return of Independence Day at Fort Bragg was a success.

"It's just a good place to be," Tony Baker said.